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> "What I think is going on here is that they're using social network  
> analysis. They get some numbers or endpoints of interest, and start  
> out with classical traffic analysis, which can all be done (as I  
> think you pointed out) with pen registers or their moral  
> equivalent. They look for other numbers, and follow the graph of  
> connections by transitivity.

Yeah, this was my first thought when I heard of the program.  The other half
of the innovation is using direct access (provided by the phone companies)
to call detail data from the switches to populate the graphs.  Then they can
monitor every line within two or three degrees of the target, using keyword
lists or voiceprints or whatever, covering not just the suspect but
everybody around them as well; people they know & people those people know.
 This is presumably what Bush means when he says "affiliated with al Qaeda";
knowing someone who knows someone who knows someone.

proveryay, na doveryay

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